by Staff Sgt. Rachelle Coleman
18th Wing Public Affairs
4/22/2013 - KADENA AIR BASE, Japan -- One year ago, base helping agencies joined forces to create a web-based resiliency school to promote and increase education.
The program, called Kadena Leadership Pathways, is open to all military
members, active duty, guard and reservist, as well as Department of
Defense civilians and dependents. It is based on the four pillars of
fitness -- mental, social, physical and spiritual -- and encourages
taking a proactive approach to comphrehensive mental fitness.
Information on the needs of the community was collected with a community
assessment survey through the integrated delivery system and community
action and information board. The IDS is a program which links all
helping agencies on base including the chapels, mental health, health
and wellness center, and Airman and family readiness center. The CAIB is
a board of agencies which communicates the needs of the base populace
According to Chaplain (Maj.) Randy Sellers, IDS chairperson, the purpose
is to provide classes from the helping agencies on base, to help
fortify Airmen in resiliency and leadership and to provide a single
forum to show what all of the agencies offer.
"That's what we do -- we look out there, put our feelers out there and
we hear what the base is saying," Sellers said. "The IDS collects that
information and then we [identify] this as a trend, more than one person
has said this, and we develop a course."
Throughout its first year, the resiliency program continued to adapt to
the needs of the base. One of the classes developed through the
identification process was Bi-cultural Marriages, which started earlier
In its first year, approximately 1,600 military members and dependents have participated in the program.
Airman 1st Class Jessica Schmidt, 18th Medical Operations Squadron
aerospace medical technician, started using the program in December and
has earned 18 points so far. The points, which are earned for every
class taken, can be used for different incentives. Classes, because they
are intended to help educate, can also be used on performance reports
and awards packages for self improvement achievements.
"When I first started I was looking for something to do because I have
my college degree already and I didn't want to take college classes
again," Schmidt said. "Some of the classes seemed interesting and the
more I took of them, the more I got involved."
"For me it turned out to be a lot more that just getting bullets," she added.
Schmidt, has taken classes from How to Avoid Marrying a Jerk/Jerkette --
her favorite class -- to Surviving Adolescence and Adulthood, although
she's a single Airman with no dependents.
Class subjects include finance, nutrition, relationships and parenting.
Though the incentives may be the driving force for some taking the classes, the real benefit comes from the lessons learned.
According to Schmidt, one class named for parents with teenagers
actually helped the 28-year-old to communicate with some of her younger
An incentive program is available for active-duty military members. The
point system is as follows; classes two hours or less are worth one
point, classes four hours or less are with two points, and classes six
hours or less are worth three points.
These points can be accumulated for the following recognition program incentives:
1 Star or Squadron-level recognition (8 points): Parking spot, recognition at commander's call and certificate
2 Star or Group-level recognition (15 points): Half day off (AD) and certificate
3 Star or Wing-level recogntition (20 points): One day off, picture in
the base paper, recognition at Kadena Team Staff Meeting, and